It’s time for our annual trip to the Georgia Peer Support Institute (GPSI). This week five peers and a staff member headed to St. Simons Island, GA to attend the three-day event.

The intensive training event is designed to teach principles of mental health recovery as consumer-directed, peer-run mental health services. Thirty-five peers from around the state are selected to attend the annual event, and we’re pleased that five of our peers are able to attend.

We’ve talked about peer-focused recovery before, but it’s one of our favorite topics. The President’s New Freedom Commission Report on Mental Health really focused more attention on programs such as ours, when it stated that peer support is an important resource in the recovery of individuals with mental health problems. (We also know that similar principles work for individuals recovering from the effects of addictive disease.)

Georgia has taken a real leadership role nationally in the development and support of peer centers, and Perry Wellness Center has been at the forefront throughout the process. This year’s attendance at GPSI reflects our continued commitment to peer-driven programs. Each peer participant will not only learn new skills, but will come back and implement a project in the community based upon what has been learned.

So even thought November on the coast might sound a bit dreary, we think it will be sunny days for our hardy crew, which includes, above: Noah, Shanesha, Javin, Shanora, Kaylon, and Nakia.

For more information on the program, go to or

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